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The Oscars Are Here: Liveblogging The 78th Annual Academy Awards

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Despite all pretensions, dissensions, and interventions, the Oscars are still the awards to beat – in terms of shock and awe, in terms of name-brand appeal, and in terms of some pretty good films. Dissenters from the Oscar parade are as old as the Oscars. Whether it is the Razzies, people who have declined the Oscar, or all those other punk award wanna-be’s, the Oscars rule, at least for one night every year, and tonight’s the night.

The 78th Annual Academy Awards, awarded by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences kicks off in less than an hour, this year from the Kodak Theatre on the corner of Hollywood and Highland, and televised live by the ABC Television Network beginning at 5 p.m. PST/8 p.m. EST. Comedian/political satirist Jon Stewart, host of the Daily Show, will host for the first time. He commented, when informed he would be the host, “As a performer, I’m truly honored to be hosting the show. Although, as an avid watcher of the Oscars, I can’t help but be a little disappointed with the choice. It appears to be another sad attempt to smoke out Billy Crystal.”

The Razzies, in case you were wondering:

WORST PICTURE: Dirty Love
WORST ACTRESS: Jenny McCarthy, Dirty Love
WORST ACTOR: Rob Schneider, Deuce Bigalow: European Gigalo
WORST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Paris Hilton, House of Wax
WORST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Hayden Christensen, Star Wars: Episode III–Revenge of the Sith
WORST ONSCREEN COUPLE: Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell, Bewitched
WORST DIRECTOR: John Asher, Dirty Love
WORST SCREENPLAY: Dirty Love
WORST SEQUEL OR REMAKE: Son of the Mask
MOST TIRESOME TABLOID TARGET: Tom Cruise: Katie Holmes, Oprah’s Couch, the Eiffel Tower and Tom’s Baby

Chip in below with your thoughts on the Oscars as they proceed, trivia, and later, with your opinions on why the Oscar should have gone to…

The nominations, in case you missed them earlier:

Best motion picture of the year

Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)
A River Road Entertainment Production
Diana Ossana and James Schamus, Producers

Capote (UA/Sony Pictures Classics)
An A-Line Pictures/Cooper’s Town/ Infinity Media Production
Caroline Baron, William Vince and Michael Ohoven, Producers

Crash (Lions Gate)
A Bob Yari/DEJ/Blackfriar’s Bridge/ Harris Company/ApolloProscreen GmbH & Co./Bull’s Eye Entertainment Production
Paul Haggis and Cathy Schulman, Producers

Good Night, and Good Luck. (Warner Independent Pictures)
A Good Night Good Luck LLC Production
Grant Heslov, Producer

Munich (Universal and DreamWorks)
A Universal Pictures/DreamWorks Pictures Production
Kathleen Kennedy, Steven Spielberg and Barry Mendel, Producers

Achievement in directing
Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)
Ang Lee

Capote (UA/Sony Pictures Classics)
Bennett Miller

Crash (Lions Gate)
Paul Haggis

Good Night, and Good Luck. (Warner Independent Pictures)
George Clooney

Munich (Universal and DreamWorks)
Steven Spielberg

Performance by an actor in a leading role

Philip Seymour Hoffman in Capote (UA/Sony Pictures Classics)

Terrence Howard in Hustle & Flow (Paramount Classics, MTV Films and New Deal Entertainment)

Heath Ledger in Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)

Joaquin Phoenix in Walk the Line (20th Century Fox)

David Strathairn in Good Night, and Good Luck. (Warner Independent Pictures)

Performance by an actor in a supporting role

George Clooney in Syriana (Warner Bros.)

Matt Dillon in Crash (Lions Gate)

Paul Giamatti in Cinderella Man (Universal and Miramax)

Jake Gyllenhaal in Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)

William Hurt in A History of Violence (New Line)

Performance by an actress in a leading role

Judi Dench in Mrs. Henderson Presents (The Weinstein Company)

Felicity Huffman in Transamerica (The Weinstein Company and IFC Films)

Keira Knightley in Pride & Prejudice (Focus Features)

Charlize Theron in North Country (Warner Bros.)

Reese Witherspoon in Walk the Line (20th Century Fox)

Performance by an actress in a supporting role

Amy Adams in Junebug (Sony Pictures Classics)

Catherine Keener in Capote (UA/Sony Pictures Classics)

Frances McDormand in North Country (Warner Bros.)

Rachel Weisz in The Constant Gardener (Focus Features)

Michelle Williams in Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)

Adapted screenplay

Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)
Screenplay by Larry McMurtry & Diana Ossana

Capote (UA/Sony Pictures Classics)
Screenplay by Dan Futterman

The Constant Gardener (Focus Features)
Screenplay by Jeffrey Caine

A History of Violence (New Line)
Screenplay by Josh Olson

Munich (Universal and DreamWorks)
Screenplay by Tony Kushner and Eric Roth

Original screenplay

Crash (Lions Gate)
Screenplay by Paul Haggis & Bobby Moresco
Story by Paul Haggis

Good Night, and Good Luck. (Warner Independent Pictures)
Screenplay by George Clooney & Grant Heslov

Match Point (DreamWorks)
Written by Woody Allen

The Squid and the Whale (Samuel Goldwyn Films and Sony Pictures Releasing)
Written by Noah Baumbach

Syriana (Warner Bros.)
Written by Stephen Gaghan

Best animated feature film of the year

Howl’s Moving Castle (Buena Vista)
Hayao Miyazaki

Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride (Warner Bros.)
Tim Burton and Mike Johnson

Wallace & Gromit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbit (DreamWorks Animation SKG)
Nick Park and Steve Box

Achievement in art direction

Good Night, and Good Luck. (Warner Independent Pictures)
Art Direction: Jim Bissell
Set Decoration: Jan Pascale

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Warner Bros.)
Art Direction: Stuart Craig
Set Decoration: Stephenie McMillan

King Kong (Universal)
Art Direction: Grant Major
Set Decoration: Dan Hennah and Simon Bright

Memoirs of a Geisha (Sony Pictures Releasing)
Art Direction: John Myhre
Set Decoration: Gretchen Rau

Pride & Prejudice (Focus Features)
Art Direction: Sarah Greenwood
Set Decoration: Katie Spencer

Achievement in cinematography

Batman Begins (Warner Bros.)
Wally Pfister

Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features)
Rodrigo Prieto

Good Night, and Good Luck. (Warner Independent Pictures)
Robert Elswit

Memoirs of a Geisha (Sony Pictures Releasing)
Dion Beebe

The New World (New Line)
Emmanuel Lubezki

Achievement in costume design

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Warner Bros.)
Gabriella Pescucci

Memoirs of a Geisha (Sony Pictures Releasing)
Colleen Atwood

Mrs. Henderson Presents (The Weinstein Company)
Sandy Powell

Pride & Prejudice (Focus Features)
Jacqueline Durran

Walk the Line (20th Century Fox)
Arianne Phillips

Best documentary feature

Darwin’s Nightmare (International Film Circuit)
A Mille et Une Production
Hubert Sauper

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (Magnolia Pictures)
An HDNet Films Production
Alex Gibney and Jason Kliot

March of the Penguins (Warner Independent Pictures)
A Bonne Pioche Production
Luc Jacquet and Yves Darondeau

Murderball (THINKFilm)
An Eat Films Production
Henry-Alex Rubin and Dana Adam Shapiro

Street Fight
A Marshall Curry Production
Marshall Curry

Best documentary short subject

The Death of Kevin Carter: Casualty of the Bang Bang Club
A Dan Krauss Production
Dan Krauss

God Sleeps in Rwanda
An Acquaro/Sherman Production
Kimberlee Acquaro and Stacy Sherman

The Mushroom Club
A Farallon Films Production
Steven Okazaki

A Note of Triumph: The Golden Age of Norman Corwin
A NomaFilms Production
Corinne Marrinan and Eric Simonson

Achievement in film editing

Cinderella Man (Universal and Miramax)
Mike Hill and Dan Hanley

The Constant Gardener (Focus Features)
Claire Simpson

Crash (Lions Gate)
Hughes Winborne

Munich (Universal and DreamWorks)
Michael Kahn

Walk the Line (20th Century Fox)
Michael McCusker

Best foreign language film of the year

Don’t Tell
A Cattleya/Rai Cinema Production
Italy

Joyeux Noël
A Nord-Ouest Production
France

Paradise Now
An Augustus Film Production
Palestine

Sophie Scholl – The Final Days
A Goldkind Filmproduktion and Broth Film Production
Germany

Tsotsi
A Moviworld Production
South Africa

Achievement in makeup

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
(Buena Vista)
Howard Berger and Tami Lane

Cinderella Man
(Universal and Miramax)
David Leroy Anderson and Lance Anderson

Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
(20th Century Fox)
Dave Elsey and Annette Miles

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)

Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features) Gustavo Santaolalla

The Constant Gardener (Focus Features) Alberto Iglesias

Memoirs of a Geisha (Sony Pictures Releasing) John Williams

Munich (Universal and DreamWorks) John Williams

Pride & Prejudice (Focus Features) Dario Marianelli

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)

“In the Deep” from Crash (Lions Gate)
Music by Kathleen “Bird” York and Michael Becker
Lyric by Kathleen “Bird” York

“It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp” from Hustle & Flow (Paramount Classics, MTV Films and New Deal Entertainment)
Music and Lyric by Jordan Houston, Cedric Coleman and Paul Beauregard

“Travelin’ Thru” from Transamerica (The Weinstein Company and IFC Films)
Music and Lyric by Dolly Parton

Best animated short film

Badgered
A National Film and Television School Production
Sharon Colman

The Moon and the Son: An Imagined Conversation
A John Canemaker Production
John Canemaker and Peggy Stern

The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello (Monster Distributes)
A 3D Films Production
Anthony Lucas

9
A Shane Acker Production
Shane Acker

One Man Band
A Pixar Animation Studios Production
Andrew Jimenez and Mark Andrews

Best live action short film

Ausreisser (The Runaway)
A Hamburg Media School, Filmwerkstatt Production
Ulrike Grote

Cashback (The British Film Institute)
A Left Turn Films Production
Sean Ellis and Lene Bausager

The Last Farm
A Zik Zak Filmworks Production
Rúnar Rúnarsson and Thor S. Sigurjónsson

Our Time Is Up
A Station B Production
Rob Pearlstein and Pia Clemente

Six Shooter (Sundance Film Channel)
A Missing in Action Films and Funny Farm Films Production
Martin McDonagh

Achievement in sound editing

King Kong (Universal) Mike Hopkins and Ethan Van der Ryn

Memoirs of a Geisha (Sony Pictures Releasing) Wylie Stateman

War of the Worlds (Paramount and DreamWorks) Richard King

Achievement in sound mixing

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Buena Vista)
Terry Porter, Dean A. Zupancic and Tony Johnson

King Kong (Universal)
Christopher Boyes, Michael Semanick, Michael Hedges and Hammond Peek

Memoirs of a Geisha (Sony Pictures Releasing)
Kevin O’Connell, Greg P. Russell, Rick Kline and John Pritchett

Walk the Line (20th Century Fox)
Paul Massey, D.M. Hemphill and Peter F. Kurland

War of the Worlds (Paramount and DreamWorks)
Andy Nelson, Anna Behlmer and Ronald Judkins

Achievement in visual effects

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Buena Vista)
Dean Wright, Bill Westenhofer, Jim Berney and Scott Farrar

King Kong (Universal)
Joe Letteri, Brian Van’t Hul, Christian Rivers and Richard Taylor

War of the Worlds (Paramount and DreamWorks)
Dennis Muren, Pablo Helman, Randy Dutra and Daniel Sudick

Blogcritics on the 78th Academy Awards

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  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Walk The Line should have been nominated for Best Picture, and Silent Waters, from Pakistan for Best Foreign Film

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Billy Crystal, Chris Rock, Steve Martin, Whoopi Goldberg, David Letterman, make zany experiences declining to host the Oscars, and Mel Gibson in Mayan decline – then Jon Stewart wakes up in bed (with who?)…

    An auspicious beginning

  • http://www.mondoirlando.com Aaron, Duke De Mondo

    damn the UK and it’s lack of coverage!!! Aaman, you are doin me a great service, and sundry others, i’d wager. be sure an report all there is to report with regards Kirsten’s dress, hair etc. and also, Murderball winnin best documentary would be lovely.

  • BrokenBack

    Funny gay-themed pastiche of classic Westerns

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Best Supporting Actor goes to…George Clooney for Syriana

    I think he sure deserved it

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Lisa McKay

    Jon’s opening monologue was pretty funny – I thought he looked really nervous at the start but warmed up a bit after he got a couple of laughs.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Oscar for Visual Effects better not go to Narnia

  • http://sportolysis.blogsome.com Pratyush

    No Star Movies working here in Calcutta, India.

    Bah.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    The Visual Effects Oscar went to King Kong – a remake that sure was fabulous

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Lisa McKay

    I find the music playing during acceptance speeches to be highly intrusive and annoying.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman
  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Best Animated feature film went to “Wallace and Gromit” – I haven’t seen it, but I wish it went to “Howl” – Miyazaki is so good, even though this might not be his best

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    All the short films are available for download on iTunes, and it makes sense now to watch ‘Six Shooter’, which won ‘live-action short’

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    And to follow-up, best animated short is given to ‘The Moon And the Son’

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    What connects Chicago and a Geisha?

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Lisa McKay

    Besides the costume designer?

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    the Oscar award for best costumes

  • http://www.tresbleu.blogspot.com Sister Ray

    Jennifer Annison looked great (so did Russell Crowe :->). I liked that she cut the comedy. I didn’t get Ben Stiller’s skit.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Anyone notice that fishes moving in harmony seems to be the in-thing in advertising – Mcdonalds and JCP used the same thing

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Lisa McKay

    Most of the gowns have been lovely, except for that flower-thingy on the front of Naomi Watts’ dress.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Best Supporting Actress went to Jake Gyllenhaal in Brokeback Mountain:)

    Actually Rachel Weiss in Constant Gardener:)

    And the music is annoying

  • http://www.swingingpuss.com swingingpuss

    Wal-mart had the best ad so far, perhaps surprisingly – short and sweet, and stylish, unlike ‘Tab – the local energy drink for women’

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Lisa McKay

    Lauren Bacall was a bit scary.

  • http://www.tresbleu.blogspot.com Sister Ray

    Kudos to Ms. Bacall, and it was fun seeing all those black and white movies.

    I must be in a curmudgeonly mood tonight – Jon Stewart is really annoying me.

    The guy from “Hustle and Flow” looked so different from how he looked in the movie.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Best documentary goes to the richly deserving “March Of the Penguins”, who take a few fake penguins up on stage

  • http://www.tresbleu.blogspot.com Sister Ray

    Yes, I was giving her kudos for brazening it through. She’s one of the few surviving from that era.

    Weren’t the penguin guys cute?

  • http://www.swingingpuss.com swingingpuss

    J-Lo looks Amazonian in that green dress

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Memoirs of A Geisha gets Art Direction too

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Pretty bland show, fireworks-wise, thus far

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Didn’t Rob Marshall direct both Chicago and Memoirs of a Geisha?

    I loved the former Oscar host montage, Jon Stewart’s monologue and the gay-Western reel. Otherwise, zzzzzzzzzzzz. Yes, George Clooney is pretty, but enough already!

    Best Score: Gustavo Santaolalla for Brokeback. Awesome! There was a good wakeup call.

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    I stopped watching after Samuel L. Jackson got on stage and he didn’t even mention Snakes on a Plane.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Oh, and Lauren Bacall RULES!

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Lisa McKay

    I agree that there hasn’t been anything thrilling happening yet. Even Nicholson looks relatively tame tonight.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    I think they bring Lauren out every year to show that she’s still waiting for Bogey to blow that whistle

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Note to Jon Stewart: Classic-film clips beat production numbers.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Lily and Meryl on Robert Altman: Priceless.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    That was really the highlight – Altman sure deserved it:)

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Lifetime Achievement Oscars make the evening worthwhile, every year – this time, Robert Altman

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    The M Night Shyamalan American Express ad epitomized film-making, Shyamalan-style, even if it was a crappy ad.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Rap on the Academy Awards… It’s the end of Western civilization as we know it. Henry Mancini must be rolling…

    Oh, right, Eminem won for “Lose Yourself.”

    This year, my money is on Dolly Parton.

  • http://www.tresbleu.blogspot.com Sister Ray

    That girl on the “Pimp” song really belted it out. And they just won! Congrats!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Nope – Hustle & Flow

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Lost that bet. Well, well, well. Hard out here for an Oscar original-song prediction-maker.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman
  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Count me in for the dreidel-off!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Jon Stewart’s commenting on the boring-ness of the awards, calling the band ‘the most exciting people out here tonight’

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Diggin’ the Gandhi ref, Mr. Lamba. Word.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Hilarious ‘attack-ad’ montage for the ‘Sound Editing nominations (Paid for by Wylie Statemen)

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Oops! So much for Jennifer Garner’s grand appearance:) she does her own stunts, evidently

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    drum-roll for King-Kong in the Sound Editing awards

  • http://www.swingingpuss.com swingingpuss

    If Jennifer Garner knew how to wear a sari, she wouldn’t have tripped

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    Oh wow, I thought Stewart said the rap guys were the most excited people, but the point about the boring-ness still stands.

    Oh… gorgeous George is here to do the death reel, my favorite part.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis,

    IN MEMORIAM (missed a couple at the start)

    Teresa Wright
    Pat Morita
    Vincent Schiavelli
    Joe Ranft
    Moira Shearer
    Fayard Nicholas
    Joel Hirschhorn
    Sandra Dee
    John Fiedler
    Tony Franciosa
    Stu Linder
    Barbara Bel Geddess
    Moustapha Akkad
    Chris Penn
    John Mills
    Robert Buzz Knudson
    Simone Simon
    Debra Hill
    Onna White
    Robert J. Schifffer
    Guy Green
    Brock Peters
    Ernest Lehman
    Shelley Winters
    Anne Bancroft (sigh)
    John Box
    Eddie Albert
    Ismail Merchant’
    Robert Wise
    Richard Pryor

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    My 3-year old was waving adieu through much of the reel, mainly because of the farewell music, I guess – shows how conditioning works

  • http://www.swingingpuss.com swingingpuss

    Ms Davis, that was some typing speed – do you have a downloadable tutor?:)

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Will Smith rocks, naturellement

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Best Foreign-Language Film: Tsotsi from South Africa, as I’d hoped. Woohoo!

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    I have amazing fingers. Or so I’ve been told.

    Amandla!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Best Foreign goes to South African Tsotsi, last year SA had a nomination too.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    “Martin Scorsese: zero Oscars

    361 Mafia: One.”

    Jon Stewart is SO bad!

    Good lord, Ziyz Zhang is GLORIOUS!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Crash totally deserved Best Editing

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Ziyi, that is. See what happens when one drools while typing?

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    If Philip Seymour Hoffman doesn’t win, I am going to cry like a three year old!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    That’s Three Six Mafia:)

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Must say, though, all the noms are stellar…

    YEAH! P-S-H!!!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Joaquim Phoenix should have totally got the Oscar for Best Actor, but didn’t, and Ms. Davis won’t cry

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Really? Thought I heard Stewart call ‘em 3-6-1… What the hell do I know about rap anyway? About as much as Marty Scorsese knows about winning Oscars…

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Damn skippy… no tears here, though Phoenix did a great, great job. He had Johnny Cash down. Hoffman WAS Truman Capote, though. Utterly transformed.
    But all of the nominees were worthy. Even if I had been crying, I would applaud any of those talented actors, who are all a credit to the fraternity of screen thespians.

    I do think Reese Witherspoon will win, however. Could be wrong, though. Wouldn’t be the first time by far.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Cinematography is a tough category this year: Again, all the nominees were deserving, and Memoirs of a Geisha is a fine choice.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Geisha is sweeping it for it’s categories – reminds one of Chicago:) – Best Cinematography, which could have gone to so many others, but only one can rule them all

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Awesome nominees for Best Actress – and it goes to Reese Witherspoon:) I totally agree

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Yeah,3-6 Mafia. Okeydoke.

    I was right about Reese. Groovy (though personally I had hoped for Felicity Huffman).

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Best speech so far, IMO: Ms. Witherspoon, who was so good as June Carter Cash. May we all have the chance to matter.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    It’s so good to see Dustin Hoffmann – and what an extemporaneous segue to distract from a minor gaffe:)

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    I love the ‘adapted’ category – brings together multiple genres – for a creative generalist, there’s nothing better – the Oscar deservedly goes to Larry McMurtry & Diana for Brokeback Mountain

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Dustin Hoffman is so adorable…

    Yes! Brokeback Mountain wins Best Adapted Screenplay!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    His last nomination, The Last Picture Show, should have won too, IMHO

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Larry Mcmurtry just stole the best acceptance speech award with ‘the culture of the book’ – remember that Brokeback Mountain was a book before it was a movie

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    The awards are coming fast now – people rushing to catch ‘Desperate Housewives’ – Crash gets Best Original Screenplay

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Cheers to Larry McMurtry for giving a shoutout to books! And if you have read Annie Proulx’s beautiful and heartbreaking short story, you realize how deserving the screewriters for Brokeback are.

    Crash wins Best Original Screenplay. Well deserved for a marvelously written film.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Aishwarya Rai hams it in the L’Oreal ad – terribly voiced, if beautifuly lensed

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    OK, going on the record here: Best Director, Ang Lee. Best Picture: Brokeback Mountain. If I am wrong, I will eat something fattening. :)

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Best Director – Ang Lee – Brokeback Mountain.

    Spielberg, as usual, doesn’t get the Best Director award

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    One down: Let’s hear it for love!

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Ang Lee joins a very small club – multiple Best Director awards

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    And the Oscar for Best Picture in the 78th Academy Awards goes to CRASH, and the hall erupts

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Crash gets three awards, by my count

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Ah well, Crash pulls the upset. Off to find something fattening and wonder if it’s homopobia or something else at play here. Spoiled the whole night for me in a way, but at least the winning film, which was quite excellent, dealt with issues of tolerance.

    Love knows no color – or gender…

  • nugget

    hahahahahaha! BB didn’t win! hahahahahahah.

    ahem…

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    BB got more, but overall, a split set of awards

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Asshole.

  • nugget

    I thought Munich should have won. Crash was a silly movie. Tolerance this tolerance that. Give me a good friggin’ movie, not a lesson in moral relativity.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    #90 kinda gives me a hint.

    Overall, the 78th annual Academy Awards was a largely dull affair with a few sparkling moments, some funny bits from its host and a heartbreaking end. But it ended by 11:30 pm, which isn’t bad.

  • http://blogcritics.org Joanie

    I’m not surprised that Dolly didn’t win for “Straight Talk” “Travelin’ Thru”. Aside from the different lyrics and a slight change in the tune, I could have sworn this was the same damn song from the movie Straight Talk (which I just saw yesterday on HBO).

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    It cost me a pretty penny, but History of Violence was mercilessly shut out!

  • http://www.swingingpuss.com swingingpuss

    Thanks to it, I was denied my cuppa tea from the local drive-thru Starbucks, which closes at midnight, and I wouldn’t let my husband drive in the snow – the urge is still strong though – maybe I need a substitute;)

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    I assume Bead Pitt will give up his quest to find a meaty gay role to play now.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Tom Cruise is still looking for one

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    As usual, I have to bow to British/foreign cinema-judging superiority over that of the US film academy. Thank heaven for the BAFTAs and Golden Globes.

  • http://www.maskedmoviesnobs.com El Bicho

    Aaman, correct about Silent Waters (I’m glad you liked it), wrong about Walk The Line.

    The show music was extremely annoying.

    They use green screen outfits in Visual Effects. The joke was that they didn’t remove his body.

    Bacall was like watching a train wreck. For her sake, they just should have cut to the clips.

    “multiple Best Director awards”

    what else did Lee win for?

    “wonder if it’s homopobia or something else at play here.”

    That is a ridiculous statement. Hollywood homophobic? You’ve obviously never worked in it. If Crash had lost, would you have wondered if it was racism? BBM won plenty of awards tonight and Capote was a gay character. If you see homophobia everywhere, you become the boy who cried wolf.

    If you want a good movie and not a lesson, than Munich doesn’t fit that bill.

    Tom and Brad in gay roles? You must have missed Interview with a Vampire.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    I thought Lee won for Crouching Tiger

  • http://www.maskedmoviesnobs.com El Bicho

    No. He won the DGA but lost to Soderbergh (Traffic) who was also nominated for Erin Brockovich.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Ah, sorry about that misinformation then, not the first time in Oscar history:)

  • Alisha Karabinus

    Ang Lee certainly did not win prior for Crouching Tiger… in fact, I believe that tonight he became the first person who is NOT a white male to win an Academy Award for directing. I could be wrong… but I think that’s the case.

  • OSCAR got old, very very old and tired!

    The worst Oscar I can remember – too many stupid violins, movie clips, and the music during the acceptance speeches really SUCKED! Next year I will just blogg instead.
    What a boaring show that was. No class and no new ideas. Same thing over and over – rich bitches and botoxed faces – what was that Dolly Parton thing. She scared my entire family to death! Do we need to have plastic surgery all over to be a winner or presenter? That is the end of showbusiness, for sure!

  • CC

    Was it me or was the audience truely dead?
    Wake up people- it supposed to be at least sort of fun. Maybe its b/c they don’t have alcholic beverages & food like at the GG or other awards. What gives?

  • http://www.tresbleu.blogspot.com Sister Ray

    If you want to send a message, call Western Union.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Mr. El Bicho: That was the statement of an extremely overwrought person. But I do feel that it is possible that at the last minute, it was easier for most voters to vote for a ‘safer’ choice for best pic, and the never-ceasing Brokeback jokes, which assaulted the nation and its airwaves with the reminder that love between two men could not be taken seriously, could not have helped. Truth is, “Racism is bad” is still easier for people to get behind than “Homophobia is bad.” Capote was a superlative performance, not an issue film. And Crash, as I said, is an excellent motion picture, so in the light of day, I can’t be too upset about it. But yeah, I am sad, because my opinion differs about which film was the year’s best. Hey, I don’t get a vote, so my feeling doesn’t matter. For my own comfort, though, I will just revel in the BAFTA and Globe choices and know in my aching, disappointed heart that America – even Hollywood – still has a long way to go. (Which, of course, is no news flash. In retrospect, I should have expected it; anything I hope for crumbles into ashes.)

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Hey, it’s an honor just to be nominated!

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Sister Ray: Western Union? What, then, of films like Coming Home? Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner? Easy Rider? To Kill a Mockingbird? The Constant Gardner? Schindler’s List? Good Night and Good Luck? Passion of the Christ? Born on the Fourth of July? Rain Man? Norma Rae? Life Is Beautiful? Brokeback Mountain? Gandhi? Crash? And so many more…

    Cinema is a powerful medium that can educate, express and entertain. It reflects the present world in which we live and can challenge people to consider other points of view, the wisdom or lack thereof in prevailing paradigms and examine the way in which we live and treat others. It’s all to the good, IMO.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Some reasons why Crash won over BB are in this post, which was a late prediction

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Aaman, Ms. Davis, Swingingpuss,

    I was reading the back and forth and it struck me that you were having the time your lives watching TV and tapping out messages on your laptops.

    Who knows? Maybe one day they’ll live stream the broadcast and I’ll pick it up on my computer…

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Until then, you have Blogcritics:)

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Ruvy, it was fun until the last award was given.

    Mr. El Bicho: Re; My reference to Brad Pitt and gay roles – it was recently reported that the adulterous actor announced his intent to find a meaty gay role to play after seeing accolades to Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal’s way. There was a purpose for the comment.

  • MCH

    Crash was better than Walk The Line and Cinderella Man? No way!

  • http://www.tresbleu.blogspot.com Sister Ray

    The “Western Union” line was something someone from the studio age supposedly said – Samuel Goldwyn maybe?

    It was an attempt at humor on my part. I like some movies with messages, but I don’t think every movie has to have a social message, or that a message automatically makes a movie more important.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Claudia Cohen, the entertainment reporter on Regis and Kelly, suggested several reasons for Crash‘s win:

    1) It took place in Los Angeles, where race relations is a huge topic every day. Eighty percent of Oscar voters live in LA, so this topic is quite relevant for them.

    2) Eighty percent of eligible voters cast ballots and most voted late. Usually the turnout is 100 percent or close to it. Apparently many voters struggled over the question of which film to choose.

    3) America and Hollywood just weren’t ready to anoint a film that showcased society’s homophobia.

    4) Brokeback jokes.

    As I opined, it turned out to be easier to get behind “racism is bad” than “homophobia is bad.” The plight of GLBT people simply doesn’t matter to most.

    This thought occurs: It’s sorta like the choice between John Kerry and Dennis Kucinich or David Cobb. People tend to go for what appears to be the safer option. It’s a pity, particularly when they treat those who can make the leap so terribly (case in point: hurtful Brokeback jokes, and that, of course, is FAR FAR FAR from the worst of it).

    None of this is news to me, but I am now even more depressed than before. Not good; this is a bad, dark day for me – and not because of a movie, but because of society.

    Love,
    the girl even more out of touch than gorgeous George Clooney

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    It would be interesting to know the voting breakdown – by numbers, demographics, etc.

  • nugget

    sheesh. NR Davis is depressed because her coveted propoganda landscape movie didn’t win top honors. DEPRESSED AND WORRIED ABOUT SOCIETY. Worry about yourself Davis. No one has time to compensate for your dictatorial social inclinations. I saw Brokeback and thought it was ok. I’m no homophobic, I’m realistic. It was just “ok.” Ok? This is not some paradigm shift in which traditional beliefs will be shattered, and oppressed iconoclasts will be proven right in 100 years. Get over yourself. Your blatant inability to be objective displays as much bigotry as any gay-hating redneck (the kind you love to hate). Just because one promotes homosexuality does mean it’s the bestest thing evar.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I’m sorry, folks; I loved Brokeback Mountain, thought it was beautiful and sad, but it did not deserve best picture. It was often painfully slow and draggy. Munich and Capote were my picks, and either one of those would have satisfied me. Crash actually satisfied me as well, as I also thought it was better than Brokeback. GNGL was not very good at all, frankly, and I don’t think it should have been nominated.

    My only point is that maybe the reason Brokeback Mountain didn’t win Best Picture was not bigoted or timid Academy voters; maybe it didn’t win Best Picture because it wasn’t.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Well, all of that lives in the realm of subjectivity, doesn’t it? We can only speculate with our views informed by our own tastes, desires and issues. AFAISI, my best-picture choice was both objective and subjective. I would imagine that is true for most people. Many people suspect, however, that a lot went into the ultimate choice.

    Mr. Nugget, I don’t hate anyone, but think what you will. As for dictatorial social inclinations, talk to the religious-wrongists who have their views enshrined in law and who created a society wherein real-life situations that mirror the conflict in BBM occured and occur. Say what you will about me, but I don’t want to punish anyone or deny anyone equality under law or beat someone with a tire iron because they disagree with me.

  • Steve

    Interesting comments folks.

    I couldn’t help noticing that two of the biggest movies of 2005 (Star Wars Episode III…, and …The Goblet Of Fire) failed to win the one award they were both up for. Oh, well, I’m sure that will change for Harry Potter 7 in 2010 or 2011, anyway lol. At least Narnia got one anyway.

    Also, none of the best pics earned over 100 million at the US box office, (apparently all the best pic noms COMBINED would only be 6th at the box office for the year!!) so I guess the ratings for these awards will be low again.

    The big surprise for me was “Memoirs Of A Geisha” winning 3 awards.

    Two predictions I heard from Roger Ebert both turned out to be quite correct –
    1) No pic would make a clean sweep…as it turned out, no movie got more than 3 awards I think.
    2) Also, that King Kong would win most or all of it’s awards (3 out of 4 ain’t bad!!).

    I was quite happy with the result, though I haven’t seen any of the nominees, folks I know who had seen Brokeback Mountain said it was pretty boring really.

    By the way, anyone see the scientific/technical awards???

  • Steve

    To clarify, I haven’t seen any of the best pic nominees I mean lol, I did see 8 that were up for other awards.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I certainly agree, Ms. Davis, that whether a film is the best is a subjective question. However, I must say that your comment in 118 certainly seems to suggest, without saying so outright, that (1) anyone who champions gay rights would have voted for Brokeback Mountain, and that therefore since Brokeback Mountain didn’t win it must be because the voters do not champion gay rights.
    Or, (2) In fact, the voters DID think that Brokeback Mountain was the Best Picture, but didn’t vote for it because it wasn’t safe enough.

    So I merely ask, is it possible that the majority of voters simply and honestly felt that Crash was the better film? And if so, why does that have to reflect badly on society?

  • http://www.maskedmoviesnobs.com El Bicho

    Ms Davis, again you only want to view other people’s motivations through your perspective, which doesn’t make it accurate regardless of what Claudia Cohen says. The numbers aren’t revealed and the votes are anonymous. We have no idea how close it was, nor do I understand who would have the mindset of making a safer choice or why. If BBM would have won, would people stop going to the movies?

    You also leave out of the equation that Crash is available on DVD while BBM isn’t. Sure, screeners might have been available, but since Crash was released so long ago, voters might have only recently seen it and had it fresher in their minds.

    You really shouldn’t allow an awards show to make you overwrought. Plus, not much would have changed in the world if BBM would have won, so you were setting yourself up for disappointment anyway.

    Let go of the vast homophobic conspiracy.

    MJW, I think you got your sentences out of order because Munich was painfully slow and draggy.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Mr. West: It needn’t be accurate: It’s my opinion, and I’ve already said it is all speculative. Of course it’s possible that everyone thought Crash to be the better film, but in my opinion – and that’s all I have – it isn’t likely, not completely. It’s a fact that many were uncomfortable about it – the never-ceasing jokes prove that. Even the actors look sheepish on chat shows and such. As for the vast homophobic conspiracy, that is a fact: The laws and legal maneuvers to change constitutions in state after state prove it.

    As for being overwrought, the awards are merely a catalyst, a symbol. The real problem is the reality. That is what makes me depressed and disappointed. I am a queer person in America. People like me are discriminated against under law and hurt day after day by societal attitudes and disrespect. OF COURSE I am going to be overwrought. Would BB winning Best Picture change anything? Of course not, but the symbolism would have been satisfying for me. I can’t express that without being forced to defend myself, for being made to feel like a stupid, catholic person who is less than everyone else? Perhaps I am inferior to all of you, but not because of this.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I certainly respect your opinion, Ms. Davis. In my opinion, however–and it’s all I have, too–discomfort with a film does not equate to wrongly snubbing it as best film. In fact, although we can debate its likelihood or not, I would suggest that it is not unreasonable (not to be confused with likely or unlikely) to think that Academy voters were honest with themselves and the nominees when they voted for Crash.

    And that’s all I’ll say on the subject.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    That’s your opinion, Mr. West, and you certainly are entitled to it.

  • http://www.maskedmoviesnobs.com El Bicho

    If Hollywood was so uncomfortable with BBM, they wouldn’t have nominated it. You act like it mysteriously garnered all these nominations and the Academy was completely embarrassed and didn’t know how to deal with it. Ang Lee and the writers winning gives the film validity.

    If its win for Best Picture wouldn’t have accomplished anything than it would have symbolized nothing except that a majority of the voters in the Academy voted for it. Anything else were your own projections. There are many bad, forgettable films that have won Best Picture.

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    So El Bee, you’re saying that a movie that won Best Picture like, say, Titanic, isn’t really that great of a OHHHHHHHHHHHH now I’m with ya.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    OK, I lied. I do have more to say. And I’m aware I’m on shaky ground, considering the crop of Best Picture nominees this year, but if I may assert:

    It is not a social or political statement every time somebody/something receives an award. Nor is it a social or political statement every time somebody/something doesn’t.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Mr. El Bicho, I humbly request that you allow me to attach meaning to symbols – for myself – as I see fit, if it isn’t too much trouble. As for what you opine, naturally you are entitled to think what you will and to express it as you see fit.

    Thankfully, I believe most agree that Crash, whether or not it deserved the Best Picture prize, was neither bad nor forgettable. As for Titanic, I would not know if it is good or bad. Heterosexual love stories make me uncomfortable.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    It was a love story? Ship meets iceberg, heartbreak and shipwreck ensues, news at 11

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    And let’s not forget Gladiator, which was by no means a heterosexual love movie. At least that’s what Cpt. Clarence Oveur got from it.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Gladiator certainly was not a favorite of mine. I still resent losing the money spent to see it.

    Wasn’t Titanic advertised constantly with that insufferable shot of (eww) Leo and Kate?

  • Steve

    “It’s a fact that many were uncomfortable about it – the never-ceasing jokes prove that. Even the actors look sheepish on chat shows and such.”

    “Heterosexual love stories make me uncomfortable.”

    Davis – why is it ok for you to be uncomfortable about simply watching a heterosexual love story, but heterosexual actors have no right to be uncomfortable talking about the gay characters they play on film???
    Don’t you think you are being just a little unfair???
    Sexuality is a very personal thing for most people, after all, it’s a topic that most folks (except perhaps exhibitionists) would be uncomfortable talking about with strangers on TV. Nothing wrong with that.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    The “Heterosexual love stories make me uncomfortable” was a stab at humor (apparently not a good one; should have followed my instinct and employed the dreaded emoticon) to try and defuse the despair this conversation is giving me.

    Kate and Leo make me uncomfortable because they’re Kate and Leo. I enjoy a good love story, even when hets are in it. To me, love is love.

  • http://desicritics.org Aaman

    Bad films are bad ‘films’, despite whatever pretensions they might have to good story, themes, etc.

  • OSCAR got old, very very old and tired!

    So was that actually George Clooney’s “coming out speech”?
    Where was his partner, Matt? And what makes me very very “uncomfortable” is that stupid Tom Cruise-Katie Holmes BS – theater!
    It is only about money! Who cares about art and ageing in dignity? I had bad dreams of Dolly Parton and her scary looks. Of botoxed Keanu’s dead face, of Charlize’s nose and face job(nice dress though) and Felicity Hoffmann’s face lift at least made sense – it worked for her part.
    Do we now first have to have plastic surgery, before we are thinking of becoming an actor/actress?
    Am I the only one who seems to enjoy a face that tells a story, instead of where it was stretched and numbed by poison to not have wrinkles? When will the Academy give Oscars for the best facelift? It is about time!

  • nugget

    ok I changed my mind. I just watched “Cinderella Man” for the first time tonight. GREAT movie. Why did this pugilism flick not win BEST PICTURE? I saw Crash, BB, and Munich. (yet to see Capote and the other) But geez, CM beat out any of the nominees I managed to sit through. How in God’s name could brokeback mountain beat Cinderella Man???

    NR Davis. Answer this question: How, in your expert objective opinion, could Brokeback Mountain be a better movie than Cinderella Man? I’m amazed this movie didn’t win best picture. Does every movie have to spout off political convictions to be considered? I’m perplexed.

    NR Davis: Opine away.

  • OSCAR got old, very very old and tired!

    Who really cares for CM?! That movie really SUCKED, MAN! That crazy Russell Crowe had his time – his gone for good! Toomuch freaking attitude…phone trows are in minds of academy members – that is why he was overseen – got it?
    And another year with that botox-queen Rene Zellwegger, thank god we did not see her his time with her scary smile! Feel only sorry for that fat short guy from Sideways – he sat there like an old steak and did not win again…maybe in 2038?!

  • LaLa singing

    i just loved ben stillers skit it was so funny!!!

  • OSCAR got old, very very old and tired!

    Oh REALLY?! What was funny – F-u-n-n-y ??? about just walking around in the green suit – without even disappearing at all!(I wish he had!) It was like a school theater wanna be funny performance. Simply sad and stupid! They should have hired Dame fucking Edna instead!

  • CrashBashing

    Hmmm, there’s a lot going on here. First of all, Aaman, how can you say:

    “Spielberg, as usual, doesn’t get the Best Director award”?

    He’s already won TWICE. It’s almost more unusual for him to lose than win (notice I said “almost”).

    Secondly, it’s not as if NR Davis is the only person to have those theories on why Crash won. The Academy loves to take itself seriously and prove how courageous it is…within reason. The media, left and right, attached meaning to both Crash and BBM. Crash was the movie that was about racism, BBM was about homophobia. (Capote, while about a gay writer, was barely paid any attention, much less made into a Message film like the others)

    But I think first, the marketing for BBM wasn’t effective and almost started to bully, as in, “you have to like this film or you’re homophobic,” instead of letting the film speak for itself. Second, all the BBM parodies and jokes eventually hurt the film in that people were tired of hearing about, whether it was positive or negative attention.

    Thirdly, I agree with others that BBM was slow, but was Crash perfect? No. While not a bad film, by the third act it was heavy-handed, manipulative and gimmicky. A film doesn’t have to be perfect to win (obviously).

    So, I agree with NR. I think there was more at play than just voters thinking Crash was a better film (if they really thought it was so good, how come it received less nominations overall than BBM? Where was the across-the-board support for it?).

    BBM supporters essentially told voters if they didn’t vote for the film they were homophobic. Anti-BBM media told the Academy that if they voted for it they were pushing their liberal “agenda” onto a society they were out of touch with. The voters couldn’t win.

    Plus, it didn’t hurt that a lot of people worked on Crash. If the voter him/herself didn’t work on the film, they likely had a friend(s) who did (not my personal opinion…that’s been explained by a lot of people in Hollywood).

    I’m rambling so I’ll wrap this up. I just think there’s a lot more reasons than the voters simply thinking Crash was a better film. To think that was the only reason seems naive.

  • http://gratefuldread.net NR Davis

    Exactly my thinking.

  • OSCAR got old, very very old and tired!

    Total BS! and you know it! The whole Oscars were lame, boaring and outdated! If that continues, 20 more years and they are history! Who is willing to go to a loud movie theater with ringing phones and the threat to be shut! Besides endlessly talking and anoying people who are caughing around their viruses..no thanks.
    Give Oscars to nurses, firmen, teachers and soldiers. Those sper greedy “moviestar fuckers” deserve $110K gift bags! Yeah right. You people need help.

  • nugget

    boaring? hahaha.

    “Give Oscars to nurses, firmen, teachers and soldiers.”

    agreed. The oscars suck and so do all of you and me too.

  • RogerMDillon

    oscar, i think you got a dsylexic virus the last time you went to the movies.

    And why would you give nurses, firmen, teachers and soldiers gold statuettes? Other than at Abu Ghraib or Gitmo I can’t see how anyone of that group could use them.

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